Someone needs to tell creepy uncle Joe Biden to quit while he’s ahead. Despite having ducked a spate of accusations over inappropriate touching, the 2020 presidential candidate is once again joking about his past behavior.
According to The Hill, Biden joked at a campaign event in New Hampshire about how a woman pulled him “close” without his prompting when a voter reached out to speak in his ear.
“We’ve got a little secret going here. I want the press to know she pulled me close,” Biden said.
People in the room reportedly laughed in response to the joke — the second time he has made light of the allegations brought against him. Shortly after seven women came forward to accuse him of creepily invading their personal space, often by rubbing their shoulders while getting his face up in their hair, Joe Biden spoke at an event hosted by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) where he mocked himself as a touchy-feely guy after a momentary embrace with IBEW President Lonnie Stephenson.
Biden said at the time, “I just want you to know I had permission to hug Lonnie … I had permission …”
Later, when several children joined Biden on stage, the former vice president put his arm around one of the boys and said cheerfully, “By the way, he gave me permission to touch him.”
Biden’s first accuser, Lucy Flores, did not find the jokes funny while saying they were indicative of how little the former vice president cares about victims.
“It’s clear @JoeBiden hasn’t reflected at all on how his inappropriate and unsolicited touching made women feel uncomfortable,” Flores said on Twitter. “To make light of something as serious as consent degrades the conversation women everywhere are courageously trying to have.”
Later, Flores called on Biden to atone for his past sins in an op-ed for The New York Times.
“The act of atoning may be difficult and complicated, but the concept is simple enough: You did something bad and it caused harm,” wrote Flores. “A basic sense of decency urges you to take measures to, at worst, express how sorry you are, and at best, do something to right the wrong.”
The former vice president, however, has only expressed sorrow simply for not understanding the value of personal space, not for anything he had ever done.
“I’m sorry I didn’t understand more,” said Biden in April. “I’m not sorry for any of my intentions. I’m not sorry for anything that I have ever done. I have never been disrespectful intentionally to a man or a woman. So that’s not the reputation I’ve had since I was in high school, for god’s sakes … The fact of the matter is I made it clear that if I made anyone feel (uncomfortable), I feel badly about that. It was never my intention. Ever.”
Despite the accusations, Biden has continued to enjoy his position as the Democratic 2020 frontrunner, with polls putting him in the lead over his opponents by double-digits. The Washington Examiner reports, however, that the enthusiasm for his candidacy has begun to show signs of slowing, with a new CNN poll showing he has dropped a full seven points since announcing his candidacy.